The Indian cricket board (BCCI) advertised the post last month, while maintaining that incumbent Anil Kumble would be considered for a contract extension after the team recorded just one defeat in 17 tests since he took over in June last year.
McDermott, who played 71 tests for Australia between 1984 and 1996 and was his country's full-time bowling coach from the 2013-14 Ashes series to last year's World T20, said he had submitted an application.
"I have had aspirations for a while to be a head coach," he told Sportstar.
"I was away from cricket coaching for a year, and now, I want to come back to it. I have also enjoyed my time in India, and it would be nice to serve Indian cricket."
According to media reports, his former team mate Tom Moody, former Pakistan coach Richard Pybus, ex-India opener Virender Sehwag and coach of the 2007 World T20 winning Indian team Lalchand Rajput have also applied for the job.
Managing an Indian dressing room full of egos and diverse personalities is a Herculean task and former captain Kumble's impressive record will be difficult to ignore.
The BCCI's Cricket Advisory Committee, which will make the decision, comprises his former team mates Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly and VVS Laxman.
Reports of Kumble's differences with Virat Kohli would give the other candidates grounds for optimism, even if the influential India captain has denied any "rift" with the coach.
First Published: June 4, 2017, 3:51 PM IST